HN is a news aggregator run by Silicon Valley startup accelerator Y Combinator and is very popular among tech geeks (a category we’re proudly part of!).
It’s not clear what the reason is. Apparently the post that got him banned was a tongue in cheek post about what to order at a business breakfast. The post generated good discussion on HN and his blog and all seemed to be fine.
But Friedman found out his blog had been blacklisted and when he emailed Paul Graham, who runs Y Combinator and Hacker News, Graham responded that that post was the “last straw”, but wouldn’t explain what the previous straws were.
Friedman’s business breakfast post struck us as smart and pretty funny. In fact we follow Friedman on Tumblr and he seems like a nice, smart guy. His blog is pretty good — in fact, it’s what got him hired at Union Square in the first place.
This just doesn’t seem to make any sense. We’ve reached out to Graham and Friedman but haven’t heard back.
Update: Here’s what Paul Graham told us via email.
I don’t even know if he’s banned, or if so why, but usually in these cases the explanation is a lot more boring than the guy in question thinks. When people or sites get banned they tend to think it was because they said something controversial, and that they’re being censored. But in fact it’s usually for submitting consistently boring or offtopic stuff, usually from their own site, and/or with a pattern of sockpuppet upvotes.
(Graham says he doesn’t even know if Friedman has been banned, but Friedman says he’s been in touch with Graham. Of course, Graham probably gets tons of these kinds of emails, on top of the actually important business of running Y Combinator, so he might not remember.)